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Today's Energy Challenges,
Tomorrow's Solutions

NREL's vision lays the foundation for scientific research and technological innovation to shape a highly efficient and resilient energy future.

For more than 40 years, NREL's world-class research staff has devised solutions to transform the way we generate, consume, store, and distribute energy. And now, our work is more important than ever.

As the population grows and new technologies and devices are added to the grid, we must examine the effects on the grid and enhance security within our most critical systems.

As environmental threats expand and human demands on urban centers increase, we need more sustainable and efficient ways of generating energy that consider resource competition worldwide.

NREL continues to anticipate these challenges, offering solutions through research, innovation, analysis, partners, and people. We are building the foundation of tomorrow's energy landscape and inspiring the economic growth of the future.

Transforming Energy through Science

We are focusing our expertise and resources on research to accelerate the transformation of traditionally fossil-based products, practices, and industries. With an eye toward emerging megatrends and evolving fields, our thought leaders have identified three distinct research areas to help guide our discoveries.

Integrated Energy Pathways

Focuses on modernizing our grid to support a broad selection of generation types, encourage active participation by the consumer, and expand our options for transportation electrification

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Electrons to Molecules

Focuses on the use of renewable, affordable electricity as the driving force for the conversion of low-energy molecules—such as water and carbon dioxide—to generate higher-value, higher-energy chemicals, fuels, and materials

Colorful molecule models

Circular Economy for Energy Materials

Focuses on reducing waste and preserving resources through the design of materials and products with reuse, recycling, and upcycling in mind from the start

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Leadership Perspectives

NREL leaders regularly contribute to the online publishing platform Medium to share their experiences and unique perspectives on the direction of the lab.

Bill Tumas speaking

The Circular Economy Can Renew Renewable Energy Technologies
By Bill Tumas, associate laboratory director

Juan Torres and Johney Green pose for a photo

Modernizing Our Energy Systems Will Help Us Engage the Future
By Juan Torres and Johney Green, associate laboratory directors